Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The American Robin - A Sign of Spring

Robins are a sign of Spring and even though we here in Houston are in the year round range of the Robin we seem to see more at Springtime. The American Robin is the most widespread songbird in North America ranging from Alaska, Canada, and New-foundland to the highlands of Mexico and Guatemala. 
 The male Robin is dark gray above, orange-brown below, white under the tail and has a bright yellow bill. The female Robin is similar to the male except she has more brown above and is pale reddish brown below. Their song is a lively ringing whistle which sounds like "cheeryup cheerily" and their calls include a "teek" and "tuk tuk tuk." The Robins nest is made of grass and mud and is usually placed on a limb of a tree or a building ledge. They have 3 to 7 light blue eggs with incubation taking 12 to 14 days and the nestlings fledge or leave the nest in 14 to 16 days. Robins will have 2 to 3 broods per season. 
 Robins hop around lawns, meadows and golf courses looking for earthworms. They also eat insects, fruit and berries. They will occasionally come to feeders for fruit (raisins or berries.) They will also use a birdbath. 
 Robins are much beloved symbols and Connecticut, Michigan and Wisconsin have chosen them as their state bird. Canada has a pair of Robins on their two dollar bill. 
 Enjoy the Robins and our wonderful Texas Spring. 

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